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To fill up key tech roles with the right people, it takes a company an average of 3 months. This is because the process is hectic, delicate, and time-consuming, and if not properly done, can lead to a poor hire, waste of time, and productivity.

The war for hiring new talents is real, companies struggle with where to find quality tech talent and the challenge of long time-to-hire, this is where CodeLn comes in.

CodeLn is a software company that helps companies seamlessly find, test, and hire skilled African tech talent i.e Software Engineers, UI/UX Designers, Data Scientists, etc.
They have a technology that automates the entire tech recruitment process; recruiters can post jobs, get matched with candidates on the talent marketplace, manage applications using an integrated applicant tracking system and also test the coding skills of applicants using an in-built assessment platform.

With CodeLn, your ideal dev is just a click away!

In 2016, Elohor Thomas, the brain behind CodeLn, facilitated a tech training program organized by the government and a top tech company. The purpose of this program was to train graduates on software development during a 3-month intensive boot camp and match all of them with employment afterward.
At the end of the boot camp, they had over 70% success, and candidates moved from tech novice to full-stack engineers in the shortest time. Their drive was mostly their desire to learn and the promise of a job from the government.  Sadly, only less than 3% of them were connected to jobs and it was mostly those who had connections in the government (“man-know-man” as it is commonly known). The candidates came back to Elohor, complaining bitterly that the government did not deliver on their promise to provide them jobs. She felt bad because there was nothing she could do to help them at the time.

Elohor Thomas started CodeLn because as an engineer, she knew that learning to code can be quite a journey and she believes that anyone that succeeds should be rewarded with their dream job.

CodeLn is addressing a niche market and their expertise to tackle the needs of this market sets them apart from other competitors. For them, it is really about their commitment to impact and solve the problem of both their users – programmers and recruiters. This has made them attractive to even notable clients and partners abroad which include Wikipedia, Microsoft, IBM, Digital Ocean, Cloudinary, to mention a few.

CodeLn is a 50% female-founded team of 4 engineers from 3 African Countries. Elohor prides in diversity ad their greatest asset as the team comprises of a Nigerian, two Kenyans and one from Ivory Coast.

They have physical offices in Ghana and Nigeria and a database of over 9000 African tech talent.

Elohor’s entrepreneurial drive runs deep in her gene. She always had the zeal to do her own thing, she ran a business of hers for over 2 years in the university. After graduation, she, went into employment to learn how to run a business from others because she believes anyone that wants to lead must first learn to serve. She passed through a corporate firm, institutions, and startups. After that, she decided it was time to start her own. Her co-founders and her kicked off CodeLn sometime in 2017.

“It is our vision to become the global go-to marketplace for finding skilled African Programmers. I always say that there is only one global language and that is “programming language”. I believe that software engineers are not limited by borders and our engineers in African can compete with their counterparts anywhere in the world -engineers without borders.” she said.

Describing her greatest fulfilment as a techpreneur, Elohor says it is “direct impact”, running her own business gives her access to directly influence decisions and take risks that would lead to measurable impact. Something she did not get during her time as an employee. In her words, “because I understand the mission of my company and I am passionate about what I am doing, I am excited to stay up late till 3 a.m working on strategies to ensure that I get the right impact and result that the business needs.”

This is why she can boldly say to anyone who has an idea in them but are afraid to begin small. If you are that person, Elohor says ““start already”. As they say, “not taking a risk is a risk on its own”. So take the risk of starting, learn, iterate and if it is not working, do not be afraid to pivot. Remember, a business only becomes what you want it to become with the right execution.’

Let these words be your drive as you launch into the new week.

Take that risk.
Bet on yourself.
Start already!

Information is power, equip yourself with all the necessary knowledge needed to grow your brand. Develop yourself, know your strengths and weaknesses, focus on your strengths and work on your weaknesses. While you work on your weaknesses, employ capable people to fill in those positions where you consider your weakness. You honestly can’t be everything to your business. For instance, if your strength lies in customer relationship and PR service and you have little or no sewing skills, Focus on your customer relationship and PR skills and work on your sewing skills. This way, the business does not suffer and your skills are effectively and efficiently utilized. — Eki Okubanjo.

Eki Oris is a fashion company that specializes in both custom made and ready to wear (RTW) clothing for the fashion-conscious woman who appreciates finely constructed pieces of impeccable quality, targeted at females 15 years and above. Eki Oris designs are influenced by simplicity, individuality and comfort of their customers.
The Eki Oris Kidswear is a clothing and accessories brand for kids (male & female) aged 0 months – 12 years. It’s a bespoke & ready-to-wear brand which has found its niche in using unique African prints and other fabrics to tailor exquisite and comfortable outfits for children.

Eki worked full time in a private company as the customer relationship manager and also did a bit of business development. During this time she was running the Eki Oris brand as a side hustle. She wore her designs to the office and got a lot of pleasing comments. She made pieces for some of her colleagues and got lots of referrals through them.
In her quest for more, she decided to quite her 9-5 job and give her fashion business the time it requires.

The Eki Oris brand has successfully maintained its integrity over four years by putting customers first, keeping to deadlines, being dependable and also giving out quality products and services. These are some of the things that make the Eki Oris brand special.

I understand the importance of having a conducive and happy working environment for your staff, because once your staff are happy and comfortable, they’ll definitely deliver their best and I have implemented this principle into my business.

Eki Okubanjo learned the basics of fashion designing from her mother who had a tailoring shop while growing up. She launched “Prints by Kira and Eki” with her friend during their National Youth Service (NYSC) year but they parted ways.

Eki Oris was founded in 2015 as a home-based business, and also a side hustle which she ran alongside her corporate job.
In July 2017 she resigned from her corporate job to focus on her business. She had saved up some money, and got some funds from her dad and boyfriend (now husband) to set up.

In her own words, “I had no prior knowledge of running a business, I didn’t know how to calculate my cost, the overheads were a lot, I didn’t know the best salary method to use for paying my tailors. I made mistakes with designs, fabric etc and I have had to refund money back to some customers, but all these experiences helped shape me into becoming a better fashion entrepreneur. Having worked in a corporate environment before venturing into full time entrepreneurship, I have also brought in a lot of knowledge I learnt while I was with my previous employer into my business. I, more than anyone understand the importance of customer management. I brought in my negotiation skills, marketing skills etc into my business and I understand how important it is for a business to keep their business data as this is what will help you make better decisions. I have implemented all of this in my business.  In retrospect, when I think of my entrepreneurial journey, I’m honestly glad for how far I have grown. I have learnt from all my mistakes, challenges and also my customers. Experience is something that cannot be bought and my experiences so far have helped me put in proper structures and policies in place that are currently helping my business.”

As an entrepreneur, Eki finds the most satisfaction in IMPACTING lives. She loves that she is able to impact lives through beautiful clothes. An Eki Oris woman is bold, and confident and I love that my designs automatically instil confidence in my customers. An Eki Oris woman goes about her daily activities with her head up and ready to conquer the world because she’s confident in herself.
“I also love that I can positively impact the lives of my staff through the jobs I have provided for them, they in turn can impact their own lives and fend for their families.”

There’s no better time to start than now! Just start. You don’t have to wait till you have everything sorted out to start your business, Rome wasn’t built in a day. Don’t rush the process as well, allow yourself to grow and learn and celebrate the small wins.

Eki Okubanjo sums up all her experiences, including successes and failures in this powerful piece of advice: Importantly information is power, equip yourself with all the necessary knowledge needed to grow your brand. Develop yourself, know your strengths and weaknesses, focus on your strengths and work on your weaknesses. While you work on your weaknesses, employ capable people to fill in those positions where you consider your weakness. You honestly can’t be everything to your business. For instance, if your strength lies in customer relationship and PR service and you have little or no sewing skills, Focus on your customer relationship and PR skills and work on your sewing skills. This way, the business does not suffer and your skills are effectively and efficiently utilized. Also, you honestly need a trailer load of patience and hard work to survive in the fashion industry. Finally, please always remember the God factor. Always pray to him for wisdom to help you run your business, pray for your staff and also your customers.

The challenges facing many women in Africa of how to manage and care for their natural hair is one that entrepreneur Farida Yahya is all too familiar with. It was the inspiration for the launch of her business Lumo Naturals, which today creates a range of specialist hair products that both cleanse and treat the hair gently. Today, the brand is winning scores of fans who are looking for a natural solution for their natural hair.

Lumo Naturals is an award-winning haircare solutions brand. With over 6 years in operation and a team of professional hair consultants and stylists, they offer a wide range of hair services and products. They provide quality hair services, along with top lines of our well formulated natural hair products.

As a naturalista, growing up, Farida saw her mother try to tame her hair with tons of relaxers. Farida’s mother tried various products and used tons of strategies but none ever worked. And just like other natural hair owners, she had problems with her own hair ranging from breakage to dry hair, breaking the piggy bank to get premium products to maintain the hair, as well as shrinkage. Additionally, Farida would spend so much time watching tons of videos on YouTube and natural hair blogs looking for tips and inspirations. In 2008, Farida resorted to making DIY products for her hair because there were no big shops that sold natural hair care products in her location. Interestingly, her experiments worked and people began to buy them.

As a female founder, you should never feel pressured to “lead like the boys”. There is nothing wrong in leading with empathy, and you should know that the world of entrepreneurship is tough, and so, don’t demand things from the angle of a victim, instead work hard and smart enough to have those doors open for you. When you do succeed, look back and lift others, mentorship and support is crucial for female founders, if we want to go far, and build the mass we need to change things for good. — Farida Yahya.

Lumo Naturals was birthed in 2012. It started with the production of the first set of natural hair care products – hair butter. And with Farida’s over nine years of experience in biochemistry and a diverse range of complementary skill sets, she has been able to create an extensive offering of affordable natural hair care products designed to benefit naturalistas.


For Farida, running her own business has pushed her to grow. Being responsible for her team and customers has challenged her to learn about how money works, what is required from a leader, and why it is important to deliver quality service consistently.
Farida says she is happiest when she solves a client’s hair challenge, and when she gets feedback about their formulations. In her words, “it gives me such a thrill to know that I am doing my quota to help make the world a better place, and reduce social inequalities.”

Lumo Naturals fill a unique niche in the beauty space. Their product line includes everything from hair cleansers to hair treatments and hair scrums, with a focus on multi-functional products. Additionally, all their products showcase clean, locally sourced ingredients that are cruelty-free, animal-free, and free of harmful irritants and additions such as parabens, benzene, and formaldehyde.

Empower a woman and you have empowered a whole community. Ubong Agina understands this so well which is why she has built a successful fashion training school centered around empowering women and helping them fulfill their potentials.

The entrepreneurial journey is not easy; it requires a large heart. However, as challenging as it may be, just as a child’s first attempts at walking, success is sure with clear focus, consistency and the ability to manage changes.

Agina was inspired to launch her fashion design and training school business, respectively for a couple of reasons.
The first being a love for African fabrics and the fashionable beauty of local, well-made designs relative to foreign brands. The second being a deep love for teaching/training.
When Agina ventured into couture, fashion designing and creation, she found a vast opportunity for capacity building and empowerment among fellow African women. So, she expanded to also establish a fashion training school.

Nubeeka Couture, an arm of Nubeeka Concepts, is a creative fashion designing private enterprise founded with the mission to promote African beauty, art and style through creative and innovative garment fashion designing. They are committed to women empowerment through training and through their own fashion school.

Their range of products includes various female apparel such as corporate-wear, semi-formal and casual dresses, gowns, jackets, skirts and tops, and shirts, all of which we produce as bespoke designs, as well as small to large scale ready-to-wear (RTW) designs.


Ubong Agina’s entrepreneurial journey started from her childhood. In her own words, “coming from a meagre background, my entrepreneurial journey started as an arduous uphill task and my main anchor was my passion to drive my mission. After acquiring the necessary basic and advanced academic, as well as fashion design skills, I started my fashion making business in the comfort of my home for the first several months. When customer satisfaction incrementally drove patronage beyond what I can manage in my home, I took the bold but fretful step and I officially launched my business, with the inclusion of the training school.”

Her biggest fulfilment as a fashion entrepreneur and trainer comes from her customer satisfaction, together with their kind and encouraging feedback and referrals.

Ubong Agina’s final words on entrepreneurship is this, “the entrepreneurial journey is not easy; it requires a large heart. However, as challenging as it may be, just as a child’s first attempts at walking, success is sure with clear focus, consistency and the ability to manage changes.”

 

ORÍKÌ Group is a wellness and personal grooming brand that is the first and only company in Nigeria to operate a luxury spa chain coupled with its own farm to skin product range.

They utilize the most, efficient & potent natural ingredients from Africa. ORÍKÌ Group comprises of a multi-channel spa, farm to skin retail product company and a wholesale & amenity product line for spa’s, hotels, and airlines.
They are a fast growing organization having developed/operated six spas, retail stores and created distribution channels across Nigeria and in three countries.

Their mission is to leave a piece of Africa with consumers around the world by creating farm to skin products, wellness centers, empowering farming ecosystems and instilling ‘skinfidence.’

Joycee was intrigued by natural ingredients and their potency as a young girl. The more she experimented; skin and hair became her weapon of choice for self-expression – a way to experiment with raw materials and resources – and it powered a journey that led her back to her roots on the continent of Africa, specifically Nigeria, and that propelled the creation of ORÍKÌ. After years of experimenting with all types of natural ingredients, at one point creating a mini lab in a home setting, testing and experimenting with diverse materials from activated charcoal to wild berries and ingredients in between.

Joycee wanted others to experience the potency of natural ingredients. Seeing a void in the industry and a depiction and narration of Africa as being helpless and lacking, she launched a personal grooming brand “inspired by nature and crowned with opulence,” focusing on a wide range of raw materials and ingredients for all skin types, creating formulas that work for all depending on skin type and concern.

Her goal as a business owner is to expand into more and more communities, giving more people the opportunity to make wellness a lifestyle.
The ORIKI Team is diverse and they all bring their unique strengths to the table. Everyone’s voice matters and everyone’s suggestions and comments are welcome.

Joycee developed a love for entrepreneurship at a young age as she had keen interest in solving problems and monetizing opportunities. She started a babysitters club when she was younger, a candy store out of my locker, she made accessories and much more as a child. Her father was also an entrepreneur and she used to enjoy visiting his office and learning about what he did, it definitely left an impression and fueled her passion.

ORIKI is scaling and expanding and bringing more ORIKI locations to more communities; they are currently working on 3 other locations as well as launching a new farm to skin product line and a new haircare line. In 2020 they were able to scale two of their service offerings – Our Spa at Home services have provided hundreds of homes the opportunity to have spa services in the safety and comfort of their home.

For Joycee, making an impact as an entrepreneur is of utmost importance to her.

Joycee’s personal piece of advice to everyone is to partner with God. In her words, “I have seen my business transform as I said NO to fear and instead gained confidence by trusting in God through every season and allowing him steer the ship and lead my efforts. I’ve come to realize that obstacles and challenges are inevitable but I no longer let the struggles consume me because I have faith that the company would be victorious.”

Chika got her footwear making skills during the annual mandatory National Youth Service Program in 2012. She has since used her work at NCR Design Shoemaking School to improve the lives of women and youths in Nigeria by enabling them to produce and export standard footwear products through training, job matching opportunities, mentoring, and access to quality and affordable raw materials.

In 2017, Chika participated in the YouWin (Youth Enterprise with Innovation in Nigeria) scheme, an initiative that finances outstanding business plans for the young, aspiring entrepreneurs in Nigeria. In 2019, she emerged among the top 100 semi-finalists in the Access Bank Womenpreneur pitch-a-ton competition. In 2020, when the COVID-19 pandemic triggered a lockdown and restriction of movements and social distancing, as well as an economic recession that resulted in loss of jobs, hunger and insecurity, Chika took to training 36 students (2 students each month) in the art of footwear making for free. She organized virtual meetings to speak on the importance of vocational skills and handiwork in these days of uncertainty when nothing is sure, with regards to securing a good job.

Chika also recently got shortlisted as one of the top 20 female entrepreneurs to participate in the She Leads Africa High Growth Coaching program. She is a member of the Bell-Africana community, YALI West Africa, She Leads Africa, and currently signed up for Female & More Africa in collaboration with Ford Foundation.  Her designs have been featured in publications, and have been worn and commended by reputable icons.

Since the incorporation of NCR Design in 2018, Chika has through the business provided the needed skills that have pulled 1000 beneficiaries of the footwear making programs out of poverty and given them a new lease of life. Chika is working towards expanding the business to accommodate varieties of courses to enable the participants to opt for the one that suits them best.

What inspires Chika the most is her desire to help others by using her business to provide jobs for those with special needs. All I have ever wanted to do in my life is to help people especially women who do not even know why they are suffering, who are denied access to quality of life, who are willing to work to get those two pieces of bread for themselves and their families, who should not suffer.
She draws inspiration from the hardships of these people, to work her way out somewhere through which she can really help them.

They provide students with enough training skills and support that will enable them to establish a career in small and medium size businesses. NCR Design provides mentorship and internship opportunities, free accommodation and makes its training facility, tools, and equipment available to students who completed their training in the school.

Chika does not come from an entrepreneurial background, and her parents are disappointed chose Shoemaking over Medicine, Engineering, Law etc. In her own words, “I wanted to create value with something that I was passionate about. I have always loved shoes but became increasingly interested in shoes when I joined shoemaking CDS group during my days as a Youth Corp member in 2012. I started to dig deep into the art of shoemaking, read about master shoemakers, the business of shoemaking, its rewards, the challenges, and opportunities… just everything about it. It was fascinating to say the least. It had never occurred to me that I could make a living out of it because interestingly, I am a graduate of Soil Science so academically, nothing really linked to the career I have now. But growing up I loved making things. I loved art. I loved creating, but somehow had forgotten about it during my years as a student. My joining the shoemaking CDS group made me remember how much I loved crafts.”

What gives Chika the most satisfaction as an entrepreneur is knowing that she is contributing to something larger than herself. That I am solving problems and bringing a product and service to the world that people need.

Chika says to young women, “You can be anything and everything you set your mind to, with the right amount of ambition, commitment, dedication and of course, hard work – you will do it. First things first, you need to realize what that best version of yourself looks like. What does this woman look like to you? Who is she? What does she do? Did she build a business from the ground up? Or is she an amazing advocate for female empowerment? There are certain questions you must ask yourself to get to know yourself. Figure out her traits and see how many of them you have yourself. Chances are, you have a lot more in common than you may have originally thought. The only differences might be that this woman is recognized for her work and gets to do it on a larger scale. That is how you need to figure out how you can take the next step.It is all about your mindsets and reprogramming your mind for success. The women we admire and look up to and aspire to be all each have different mindsets.”

Omotola Olaniyi-Omosebi is the current Creative Director of Gmoty Fashion Academy. A graduate of Business Administration from Yaba College of Technology Yaba Lagos. She founded Gmoty Fashion Academy in 2014 graduating from Ginani Fashion School. In 2016 she attended Zaris Fashion Academy for a finishing course. Her mission is to help women become resourceful so they can help their children and family.

“A few years ago, I struggled with how to cut and sew clothes, I didn’t know where to start from or where to learn the skills I needed. So I spent years looking for a solution to this problem from different places. I ended up wasting years learning little to nothing, I wasted money and time yet with nothing to show. On different occasions I would watch videos, read books and even attend sewing group tutorials all in the hope to learn. My sewing skills, interpretation of designs or perfect finishing was nothing to write-home-about. I became so confused, worried, scared and frustrated because I knew I was losing out, I didn’t believe in myself and my skills as I couldn’t sew anything meaningful for myself, not to talk of making clothes for clients. I spent a full year learning from a so-called ‘good’ tailor. But I knew if I could get hold of these skills it would help a great deal. I knew I needed a way out very fast because it was starting to affect my self-esteem; I didn’t like the fact that I was always asking my husband for every single kobo I needed. It was really bad. I finally found a way out.”

Today the story is different, as Omotola not only sews well fitted garments, she also now help and teach other married women who are interested about learning how to sew and earn from the skill. In May 2018, she opened a Fashion Training Academy where she trains people so far, they have trained over 300 women (boys and girls also included for summer classes) and still counting. Gmoty Fashion Academy is indeed a community that helps women find clarity and move very fast from being a full housewife to a resourceful housewife.


Her fashion school doesn’t teach only fashion, they also teach the business side of fashion. This is where they bring in experts from the industry to train and educate their students on selling and branding etc. They train them and we give them their first job.

They also teach their students how to use the latest tech tools to promote their products and services.

We do fashion training and education, sales of fashion designs (Ready to Wear), childrenswear, handcrafted products made by students, including Laptop Bags, Ankara Tote Bags, Neck Pillows and Accessories etc. We also offer a range of consultancy and advisory services.

Omotola specializes in African ready to wear, casuals and corporate wear. She has participated in various fashion shows including Runway Fadan 2015 (Fashion Designers Association of Nigeria), Ankara Fiesta 2015 and a host of other exhibitions.

She has participated in various fashion shows including Runway Fadan 2015 (Fashion Designers Association of Nigeria), Ankara Fiesta 2015 and a host of other exhibitions.
Omotola is a recipient of the Goldman Sachs 10,000 women initiative Scholarship, and studied Entrepreneurial Management at the Pan Atlantic University (Lagos Business School). She is a member of FADAN (Fashion Designers Association of Nigeria) the recognized body for the Fashion Designers Profession. Also a member of AFDEC (African Fashion Development and Empowerment Centre).

What gives her the most satisfaction as an entrepreneur is the ability to practice her skills every day, and she is happy that this skill is creating the safe place for women to grow their self-belief so as to become support systems to their families and role models in their communities. Omotola finds joy in seeing women become more involved in running the home front, leading in their communities, and speaking out loud with their heads up high. This can only be achieved when our women are empowered with livelihood skills, when they have different streams of Income.

This is why Omotola screams to anyone who wants to listen “Learn a skill today!! Never depend solely on your spouse, the power you have is that little money you can call your own. The best time to start is NOW!”

STEM has a capacity to make huge impacts in the lives of young people, particularly women and girls, on the African continent cannot be underestimated.

STEMi Makers Africa, founded by Amanda Obidike, addresses the existing unemployment gap, the underrepresentation of young women and girls in STEM and the fragmented education system by training teachers and students in STEM Education.

Amanda Obidike is a multi-award winning social innovator, technologist and scientist. She is the Founding Curator of the WEF Global Shapers, Ozubulu Hub and Executive Director of STEMi Makers Africa. Her role in this position is to provide leadership, strategy management and oversee the design and implementation of sustainable Community projects and STEM Education across 19 Sub-Saharan countries by preparing the next generation of Africans with STEM lucrative skills for Africa’s workforce.
In addition to STEM, she addresses thematic topics on Social Innovation, Data Science, Youth Development, Entrepreneurship and socio-economic policies. In 2020, Amanda received several awards including the Global Award for Achievement by TechWomen 100 and 30 Under 30 Inspiring Leaders of Africa.

The lucrative jobs of the future required technical competence and 21st century skills that she didn’t have. Nigeria began to transfer major Resources and job opportunities to skilled professionals and expatriates due to a lack of competent and domestic STEM workforce. Seeing this economic disparity, she began to research on new labour market skills that youths like her can successfully thrive in. She got an opportunity to be trained by IBM in Business Intelligence/Analytics after 8 months. Upon completion, she took the initiative to serve as a knowledge panel in preparing Africans with 21st-century skills and future-focused options for an emerging workforce.
This was her inspiration, her driving force to starting STEMi Makers Africa.

Her advice to women is for them to be open to learning from women’s stories. Shared experiences from women who have existing businesses and start-ups can pave a lasting way for women who are about to launch their businesses in learning business ethics and challenges encountered.

Amanda urges women to not focus only on hearing the success sides or accomplishments of others  but strive to know the challenges, setbacks and hurdles they encountered. As this can help them overcome futuristic and business tendencies to failure.

She encourages women to feel free to network, attend business seminars (virtually or in-person), and most importantly, get a business mentor who is accessible. Someone they can always feel free to ask questions or give them that business support or counsel they may need.

Amanda Obidike serves as a Mentor in the New York Academy of Science, Cherie Blair Foundation, the 1 million Women in Tech, Global thinkers for Women where she lends her voice, knowledge, and serve as a role model to girls in Africa.

She currently serves on the Leadership Team of the 500 Women Scientists, USA and Trustee Board of the MAI Foundation.

Whether they choose to admit it or not, the goal of every business or product owner is to be noticed and patronised by people outside the shores of their country.

One problem business owners have faced for years is making their products noticed by other consumers apart from those within their vicinity.
Getting products noticed by global consumers is always difficult for Africa’s creative women entrepreneurs, but this challenge represented an opportunity for Bukky Asehinde, founder of Bellafricana. Her platform is giving visibility to Nigeria’s creative business owners and their quality products.

Bellafricana, is a platform that empowers, supports and connects quality, talented and creative indigenous businesses to their local and global consumers.
Starting with Nigeria, their goal is to take it one African Country at a time.

Bukky created a platform to enable creative MSMEs to thrive, whilst doing all it takes to bring the quality products to the forefront of the market. She believes very much that a support group/community for these businesses will enhance the non-oil export in the African economy.

Bukky was inspired to start this up when she noticed a rise in the number of creative indigenous (made in Nigeria, Africa) brands that have great quality, yet are struggling to grow their business with little or no financing from both the government and bigger institutions.
She wondered for a long time, “Why should we wait on financial backing from the government and big institutions to help this industry, when we can create a platform to connect these Indigenous businesses who are maximising raw materials in Nigeria (Africa), providing employment for local talents within the country and creating wealth for the Nation?”. And so she conducted a research, which made her realize that one of the major challenges these businesses were facing majorly has to do with marketing and understanding the trade, which is the heart of any business.
This birthed Bellafricana, a community that showcases the products of local entrepreneurs to a wider audience, both locally and globally.

Bukky finds satisfaction as an entrepreneur because she is able to contribute to the growth of the economy, making an impact that will outlive her, and touching lives.

Bukky Asehinde

Her counsel to women who are trying to start a business is simple:

SURROUND YOURSELF WITH WISE & POSITIVE PEOPLE: This is so vital especially when you know your personality type. I am an extrovert and a positive person, so having negative people around me was a no no. This I know has certainly helped my journey. Another key one is surrounding yourself with wise people, as the bible says also “He that walketh with wise men shall be wise: but a companion of fools shall be destroyed”.

GET MENTORS: It’s important to have mentors who key into the vision of what you do and are thought leaders in their various sectors not necessarily celebrities. How? (you might ask) by keeping a relationship with them and striking a mutually beneficial balance of what they do, they will give you more than their time when you show you care.”

Bellafricana is that “support system” every creative business owner needs to be globally accessible.

Every woman wants to feel and look good, and finding the right stylish clothing for any occasion plays such an important part in that process.

In Nigeria, entrepreneur Ijeoma Onuoha, founder of fashion business Asoebigirl Limited and creator of the brand, Touchbyasoebigirl, is bringing her stylish designs within reach of every discerning woman. 

Ijeoma Onuoha is the founder and head creative designer at TouchbyAsoebigirl, a female fashion brand founded in 2017 under the parent company Asoebigirl Limited. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Technology from the University of Port Harcourt and a certificate in the Essentials of Entrepreneurship from Harvard Business School.

Your dreams are valid regardless of what your present situation looks like. Just start!

Touchbyasoebigirl is a female fashion brand (parent company Asoebigirl Limited) created to meet the fashion needs of women through affordable but stylish clothing.

Their customers are fondly called “Touch Woman”. A Touch Woman is a woman that stays stylish regardless of what time or day or occasion it is, and to this end, Touchbyasoebigirl caters to different events; corporate look, casual, events and weddings, swim wear, lounge wear etc.


Their pieces are tailored uniquely to cater to individual styles and personality and their customer base currently extends beyond Nigeria into other African countries (Ghana, Kenya, South Africa, Botswana, Cameroon), UK, Europe and the US/Canada.
They recently launched a collection called the Touch Executive Woman which offers finely tailored pants suits that show the sexy, confident and powerful sides of the women that wear them.

She was inspired to be a fashion entrepreneur by her mother who has been a fashion designer for more than three decades. What she picked up as means of unwinding from work stress has now become a major source of income for her.

In her words, “Every time I walk into a room, I start to look for where there are needs (in some situations, I create the needs), and then find ways to meet these needs. You can say I have always been a sales woman. I started my first business at 19 years old while in University, I sold make-up products for a couple of years, sold thrift jackets from the UK and even lifestyle products like BP machines. The idea of multiple streams of income forever appeals to me and this explains why today I have a business running in fashion while I maintain a 9-5 job in the Healthcare industry. I guess we can say entrepreneurship comes naturally for me.”

Ijeoma Onuoha has over 7 years of work experience in Business development, relationship management and sales across different industries including Telecommunications, Media and most recently, healthcare.